No Matter How Badly You Mess Up, God Offers Mercy

“When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit” (Titus 3:4-5 NLT).

No matter what you’re going through, you can live with hope. That’s the consistent, overriding message of the Bible. God will always treat you with grace and mercy. Peter writes to those who are already believers, “All honor to God, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ; for it is his boundless mercy that has given us the privilege of being born again” (1 Peter 1:3 TLB).

The more we understand grace, the more we’ll be amazed by it. It’s completely undeserved. It’s totally unmerited. It is not something that you could earn or work for. It’s just a free gift of God’s mercy.

You can’t make God love you any more than he loves you right now. You can’t make him love you any less. His love is based on his mercy for you.

God’s Word tells us, “When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit” (Titus 3:4-5 NLT).

This is extremely important to understand. When you make mistakes as a believer, God doesn’t get mad at you. God doesn’t want to get even with you. God doesn’t start planning to mess up your life. God always acts in mercy toward you. Why? Because you’re covered in the blood of Jesus Christ when you’ve accepted him as Savior. That’s why God responds in mercy every time you mess up.

And that can give you hope.

Talk It Over

  • It’s difficult for many people to accept God’s grace and mercy. Why do you think this is so?
  • How else would you describe God when you understand that he loves you and shows you mercy even when you mess up?
  • What person in your life needs to hear about the grace and mercy of God? How can you share that message with him or her this week?

MY UTMOST FOR HIS HIGHEST

“Not by Might nor by Power”

My speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power…  1 Corinthians 2:4

If in preaching the gospel you substitute your knowledge of the way of salvation for confidence in the power of the gospel, you hinder people from getting to reality. Take care to see while you proclaim your knowledge of the way of salvation, that you yourself are rooted and grounded by faith in God. Never rely on the clearness of your presentation, but as you give your explanation make sure that you are relying on the Holy Spirit. Rely on the certainty of God’s redemptive power, and He will create His own life in people.

Once you are rooted in reality, nothing can shake you. If your faith is in experiences, anything that happens is likely to upset that faith. But nothing can ever change God or the reality of redemption. Base your faith on that, and you are as eternally secure as God Himself. Once you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, you will never be moved again. That is the meaning of sanctification. God disapproves of our human efforts to cling to the concept that sanctification is merely an experience, while forgetting that even our sanctification must also be sanctified (see John 17:19). I must deliberately give my sanctified life to God for His service, so that He can use me as His hands and His feet. From My Utmost for His Highest Updated Edition

Bible in One Year: Ezekiel 45-46; 1 John 2

 

WISDOM FROM OSWALD CHAMBERS

The emphasis to-day is placed on the furtherance of an organization; the note is, “We must keep this thing going.” If we are in God’s order the thing will go; if we are not in His order, it won’t.

from Conformed to His Image, 357 R

Unsinkable YouVersion Devotional

Truths About Truth
By Pastor Dan Hickling
“Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.”—James 1:18 (NKJV)

How does “truth” factor into the spiritual life? How important is it in God’s process of bringing people into a life-giving relationship with Himself? According to this verse in the Book of James, truth is what God chose to use as He “brought us forth.”

“Brought forth” is another way of saying give birth. So, what James is teaching us here is that God uses truth (His word of truth) to bring about spiritual birth in those who are His. That makes truth pretty important. In fact, that makes truth vital; for the spiritual life depends on spiritual birth, and spiritual birth depends on the word of truth. There can be no fruit if there is no seed!

If truth is so important, we should ask ourselves what James means by “the word of truth.” The truth God uses to bring about spiritual life is specific and definable. It’s not some ambiguous or subjective notion floating around that can mean whatever a person wants it to mean. That’s how much of our world wants to understand “truth”—as something very open-ended that cannot be defined. But the truth that saves is definable just as words are used to define and make things certain.

And that word of truth tells us something definite and specific. It tells us that God loves us, despite the fact we’ve fallen into a state of sin, death, and eternal judgment. And that He loves us so much that He sent His sinless Son to take all of our guilt upon Himself to satisfy its penalty, so we could be forgiven and experience an everlasting relationship with Him. In its most basic essence, the word of truth declares: “He is for me . . . God died for me!” That is the “irreducible minimum” of the gospel. 

If anything distorts or denies this, it is not the word of truth that James is writing about. It’s a counterfeit word of truth, a false path that may sound spiritually profound but won’t lead to the spiritual life that God desires to give.

The truth is vital, the truth is definable, and the truth is the gospel. May we never be confused or swayed but always understanding and resolute when it comes to these truths about the word of truth! 

DIG: What are three truths about the word of truth James refers to here?

DISCOVER: How are these truths contested by the world around us?

DO: Consider practical steps you can take to strengthen your resolve for the word of truth.